Art & Architecture in the Veneto
Famed by the regional capital, Venice, with its blue canals and Gothic architecture, the Veneto boasts Renaissance Vicenza with fine examples of Palladian architecture, as well as the Palazzo Chiericati and the Scrovegni Chapel in Padua, with a fresco cycle by Giotto.
With a private reception and lecture at the Museo Bottacin, this is the tour for picturesque architecture and paintings by the Venetian Greats: Canaletto, Tintoretto, Tiepolo.
You’ll enjoy a private tour of La Rotonda, a World Heritage Site and Palladio’s most famous villa, and a trip to the region wouldn’t be complete without a cruise down Brenta Canal to view other examples of Venetian villas.
- Experience a private tour of La Rotonda, Palladio's most famous villa
- Witness the fresco cycle by Giotto at the Scrovegni Chapel
- View paintings by Tintoretto, Canaletto and Tiepolo at the Gallerie dell’Accademia, in Venice
- Cultural Excursion
- Special Access
- All Inclusive
We take a morning flight to Venice, transferring to our hotel in Padua on arrival. Situated on the banks of the Bacchiglione River, picturesque Padua was founded by a Trojan prince in the 12th century BC, and is thought to be the oldest city in Northern Italy. Famed for its Medieval architecture, it makes the perfect base for the rest of our trip.
This afternoon we enjoy some time to relax and unpack before heading to Museo Bottacin for a private reception among its palatial collection of antiquities. An introductory lecture here sets us up for our adventures in Veneto.
Our day begins with a walking tour of Padua’s historic city centre, with its immaculate arcades, piazzas and canals. The highlight of the morning has to be our visit to the Scrovegni Chapel, the 14th-century church housing Giotto’s great masterpiece: a triumphant cycle of religious frescos depicting scenes from the New Testament. Every surface of the chapel’s interior is covered – a lavish legacy of this early Renaissance hero.
Pausing for lunch at a local restaurant, our afternoon continues with further exploration of Padua’s top spots. An intimate encounter with one of Italy’s most beautiful cities.
This morning we make our way to Venice, the jewel in the North-East’s crown – a unique, enchanting dreamscape rising hauntingly out of the water. After admiring some of Venice’s finest architecture, we head for the Gallerie dell’Accademia, renowned for its peerless 19th-century art collections, where we find paintings from such Western greats as Titian, Tintoretto, Canaletto, Tiepolo and Bosch.
Situated on the south bank of the Grand Canal, the gallery offers easy access to a thrilling mix of local bars and restaurants, making it the perfect place to sit down for our lunch.
In the afternoon we return to Padua, taking some time to unwind before dinner.
Our destination today is the graceful city of Vicenza, a prized UNESCO World Heritage site since 1994, where we view some truly remarkable examples of Renaissance and Palladian architecture.
Our first stops are Palazzo Chiericati and Teatro Olimpico, both designed by Andrea Palladio in the 1500s. Commissioned as a home for Count Chiericati, the palace now contains an excellent art gallery, where a priceless collection of Palladio’s drawings sits alongside works from artists such as Van Dyck and Tintoretto. Palladio’s last creation, The Teatro Olimpico is another real gem – being one of only three Renaissance theatres still in existence.
After lunch, we enjoy a private tour of La Villa Rotonda, Palladio’s best-known work and a World Heritage site in itself. We marvel at its extensive landscaped gardens, and note the echoes of the Pantheon in the Rotonda’s style and interiors.
We return to Padua later this afternoon, and come together over a well-earned evening meal.
After breakfast we start our day with a tranquil trip along the Brenta Canal, viewing further examples of Venetian villas from the comfort of our boat. A fittingly romantic way to admire the finest residences of the region.
We leave our vessel to explore Bassano Del Grappa, where we have our lunch. This charismatic little city has long been celebrated for two things: one related to art, and the other (as you may have guessed) to alcohol…
We first encounter the legacy of the Renaissance painter Jacopo da Ponte, who took the name of his birth-place to become Jacopo Bassano. At the elegant Museo Civico, housed within a former convent, a selection of the artist’s masterpieces share the spotlight with an impressive array of archaeological artefacts.
The second thing for which Bassano is famed is, of course, its grappa, and before we return to Padua we have the chance to sample some of this fragrant spirit. Saluti!
Our final morning is ours to enjoy the splendours of Padua at our leisure – a chance to shop in the local boutiques, watch the world pass by at one of the central piazzas, or breathe in the Autumn air during a walk along the canal.
Our flight home departs from Venice in the afternoon.
- Expert Guide Lecturer
- Tour Manager
- Local Travel - Private a/c coach
- Meals - All meals included with wine at dinner
- Entries & Tips - Entry to all sites in programme; tips included
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